Every workplace has its own threats, especially in terms of ergonomics. The welding industry is even more exposed to these kinds of comfort issues and safety hazards. Ergonomics is a critical factor that should always be taken into consideration for any welding project. Welding and fabrication is a safe profession if proper precautions are taken.
Accidents can happen in welding operations. In worst case scenarios, they can result in serious injuries. Some accidents can affect not only the welder but the other personnel working in the immediate area as well. Most of these accidents occur not because of the lack of protective equipment, but because of negligence, lack of proper knowledge, improper use of equipment and a hazardous workspace.
Common Hazards in Welding Operations
There are several hazards centered to welding, hazards that you must acknowledge and address as soon as possible. According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), welding is a hazardous activity among others that pose both safety and health risks to over 500,00 workers in various industries.
- Respiratory Issues
Recent research confirms that welders are highly susceptible to respiratory infections like pneumonia. Many welders suffer from work-related asthma problems as well.
Other studies also show that harmful gases like chromium oxide (Cr₂O₃) and nickel oxide (NiO) found in stainless steel fumes can cause other respiratory problems such as metal fume fever, throat and lungs irritation, and even cancer.
- Other Health Risks
Welding causes a significant wear and tear on a welder’s body. Daily, for hours on end, welders are stooped over a weld puddle in various positions just to get the job done.
Constantly holding awkward positions while holding a welding gun produces significant stress on a welder’s arms, hands, shoulders, neck, and back. This can cause musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) that can affect the welder’s body movement and posture for good.
- Safety Hazards
Exposure to heat, electricity, and gases cause other safety hazards like burns, electric shock, fires, welding fumes, and other injuries or accidents. According to OSHA, roughly 562,000 employees are at risk of exposure to chemical and physical hazards of welding.
You can prevent these injuries and accidents from happening in your welding workspace by doing necessary hazard assessments to uncover all potential risks within your facility and implementing safety measures.
You can start by providing your welders with proper personal protective equipment (PPE) and by improving your operations with high-quality and efficient welding equipment. Implementing welding automation in your workspace is a good place to start.
How ArcBoss Welding Automation Reduces Risks
Welding automation promotes flexibility, efficiency and worker comfort in both small and large-scale welding operations.
ArcBoss welding manipulators allow your welders to stand or sit in a much comfortable position, in the safety of their own stations and further away from the heat zone. Welders don’t have to hover too close in every weld project they have to work on, reducing exposure to potentially harmful gases, fumes, electricity, and heat.
Unlike other manipulators in the market, ArcBoss’s Oscillating Unit, Sub Arc Manual Unit, and the custom units are highly mobile, so every welder in your shop can use it at the safety of their own station. Their multiple adjustments make the units more adjustable and flexible, it can be positioned to achieve virtually any weld needed without retaining awkward positions for a long period of time.
Executing safety measures in a welding environment should not be some kind of quick fix, it should be taken as a precautionary measure. Promoting welder comfort with welding automation can lessen the chance of accidents and injuries in your facility while enhancing proficiency and productivity at the same time.
With ArcBoss, every welder in your shop can weld with the same skill and proficiency, without too much exposure to safety hazards. Contact us now to know more about welding automation or request a quote now!